Bowyer wins at Richmond, Gordon squeaks into Chase

12:57 AM, Sep 9, 2012   |    comments
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Richmond, VA (Sports Network) - Clint Bowyer overcame a mid-race spin and then conserved enough fuel in the late going to win Saturday night's Federated Auto Parts 400 at Richmond International Raceway.

The start of the 400-lap race at Richmond was delayed for 90 minutes due to rain. Another shower moved over the 0.75-mile racetrack after 152 laps were completed, forcing NASCAR to halt it for another 51 minutes. The race concluded at 1:23 a.m. (ET).

While Bowyer claimed his second win of the season, Hendrick Motorsports teammates Kasey Kahne and Jeff Gordon clinched the two wild card positions for the championship Chase, which begins on Sept. 16 at Chicagoland Speedway. Gordon struggled throughout most of the race with an ill-handling car but rallied in the late stages to finish second. He edged Kyle Busch for the last wild card spot by just three points. Busch finished one lap down in 16th.

Despite a 12th-place finish, Kahne grabbed the first wild card by virtue of his two wins during the regular season.

Mark Martin finished third, while Tony Stewart, the defending series champion, placed fourth and clinched the final Chase spot among the top-10 in points.

Denny Hamlin's four wins this season earned him the first seed in the Chase. Hamlin, who was attempting to win his third straight race, led 202 of the first 300 laps but pit strategy in the final 100 laps put him out of contention to win. He finished 18th.

The Sports Network

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